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Paranoid Park


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Paranoid Park + Elephant (HBO) + Gus Van Sant's Last Days
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Product Details

  • Actors: Gabe Nevins, Daniel Liu, Taylor Momsen, Jake Miller, Lauren McKinney
  • Directors: Gus Van Sant
  • Writers: Gus Van Sant, Blake Nelson
  • Producers: David Allen Cress, Neil Kopp
  • Format: Color, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Ifc
  • DVD Release Date: October 7, 2008
  • Run Time: 85 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Shipping: Currently, item can be shipped only within the U.S. and to APO/FPO addresses. For APO/FPO shipments, please check with the manufacturer regarding warranty and support issues.
  • ASIN: B001CDFY7S
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #78,403 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Paranoid Park" on IMDb

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

An unsolved murder at Portland's infamous Paranoid Park brings detectives to a local high school, propelling a young skater into a moral dilemma where he must deal with the consequences of his own actions. As director of My Own Private Idaho, Good Will Hunting, To Die For and Elephant, Gus Van Sant has created some of the most memorable stories about youth ever committed to film. New York Press says Paranoid Park boasts "the coolest pop score since Pulp Fiction " and the film was shot by the acclaimed cinematographer Christopher Doyle (In the Mood for Love, The Quiet American). Paranoid Park also features a cast of hot newcomers including Gabe Nevins and "Gossip Girl's" Taylor Momsen.

Customer Reviews

Alex lives in a world that offers little joy.
Subauthor
I'm not really a fan of people who use cliched terms like "This was an hour and a half of my life that I wasted watching this film that I'll never get back again."
Joseph Cena
Another great aspect of this particular film is the almost total lack of adult or authority figures in it.
hated and proud

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Subauthor on March 23, 2008
Alex, the narrarator and protagonist of "Paranoid Park", is not your typical romanticised culluloid teen. He is quiet, introspective, and near mute when it comes to verbalizing his feelings. He is the antithesis of a sullen, vapid adolescent skater. On the contrary, I found his parents to be vapid. When he speaks to them, what they say hardly makes an impact, because their efforts to really get through to him are ineffective. It's like carrying out an inane conversation with a stranger in which nothing is really said. Pleasantries are exchanged, but little beyond superficial subjects is broached.
The aftershock of a gruesome accident has left Alex shell-shocked. The entire film is about the way guilt haunts him like a shadowy executioner. Close-ups of his friends' faces emphasize the way he searches their expressions for the slightest hint of accusation. Alex lives in a world that offers little joy. His parents are getting divorced, and he has dislocated himself to the lonely confines of a journal. The journal is his confidante, his only witness to paralyzing emotions that stalk him during his waking hours.
Alex's character is not glorified in any way. He is awkward like most teens, he is not an expert skateboarder, and is reluctant to venture down the concrete slopes of the skate park carved under a colossal bridge. He is drawn toward Paranoid park because he seeks something resembling companionship and family. Jumping a boxcar leads to a fatal and grisly accident. Alex must live with the consequences of this mistake, which leads to intriguing questions about morality and the complexities of unintentional manslaughter. Gus Van Sant is not interested in the cogs of the judicial system, however, he is interested in the tormented machinery ticking away inside the young skater's head.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By WW85 on December 15, 2008
Format: DVD
There are 2 well known aggregate movie review sites, MetaCritic and Rotten Tomatoes that would give this film an average of 4 stars out of 5. (The NY Times review in particular is dead on, imho.) The 1 star "total bomb" reviews here are completely out of sync with accepted opinion of Paranoid Park.

Obviously, it's not for everyone. It is more for those that could appreciate Elephant or 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days than someone looking for an action skater flick. But it will go down as one of Gus Van Sant's best films in what is already a distinguished career. It's one of the most beautiful movies of recent years and the score and sound mixing is stupendous. But it takes some time and attitude adjustment to get into the flow with the film. It's well worth the time and almost demands multiple viewings.

As with Elephant, many of the young actors are novices at best. This is not a drawback at all. It only enhances the movie because the characters are so real.

Did I say it's one of the most beautiful films of recent years? Slow motion skaters, the train scene scored to a key passage from Beethoven's 9th, the shower scene, the beach, beautiful boys, beautiful girls, not so beautiful girls, losing ones virginity- all in beautiful slow motion scenes told out of sequence, often with no dialog and sometimes repeated to underscore certain points. Two signature Elliott Smith songs, played almost in their entirety, accompany two long and unedited shots of the title character to create two more memorable moments.

One of the best of 2007 and deservedly so...
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Daniel S. on June 26, 2008
**** 2007. Based on Blake Nelson's Paranoid Park and written and directed by Gus Van Sant. 60th Anniversary Prize in Cannes in 2007. A young skateboarder kills by accident a security guard. During the next days, he will try to find a way to formulate his guilt-feelings. Another movie about American teens by one of the most important modern American directors. By mixing Super 8 and 35 mm footage, making space go to pieces with multiple cameras filming the same scene and time by adopting a non linear narration line, Gus van Sant doesn't choose the easy way to galvanize our curiosity. I thank him for that. Highly recommended.

I saw this film on a zone 2 DVD, collector edition, available at Amazon.fr.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Gunnar Moquin on January 11, 2009
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Buyer Beware! This blu-ray was manufactured in England which uses the PAL T.V. system which is not compatible with the NTSC system we have here in the U.S. The movie is an exceptional blu-ray presentation, but the extra features were not done in high def therefore they are the PAL system and cannot be viewed on our T.V. sets. I will say this, even though Amazon was not aware of this they were willing to let me return the DVD for a full refund. Since I love the film and would not watch the bonus features that much (who does anyway) I am going to keep this high quality disc.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By billy on April 17, 2008
Paranoid Park is Gus Van Sant's twelfth feature film, and the third in his recent films about disaffected youth. Adapted from a novel by Portland writer Blake Nelson and obviously inspired by Crime and Punishment, Paranoid Park follows the life Alex, a local skate punk who gets tangled up in a grisly accident.

The thin plot has Alex, played by Gabe Nevins, attracted to Paranoid Park, a skate park that was built illegally by punks, skaters, and other riff raff. Alex goes there one night alone, and is essentially picked up by some shady characters. Without spoiling anything, he does something terrible and spends the rest of the movie trying to cope, mainly by writing out what happened in a letter to one of his friends. Paranoid Park represents a place where Alex feels that he can belong. He expresses how much he's attracted to the type of people who skate there, and he yearns to belong to their subculture, yet he never manages to find his place.

His writing literally drives the plot, as what he's writing down in his letter is what we experience as an audience. The focus of Paranoid Park is decidedly insular. Built around a series of disorienting techniques like dialogue overlaid with music, one sided dialogues where the other person is either obscured or off camera all together, long takes of Alex walking alone with a musical backdrop, and close-ups of Alex's blank stare, Alex's inner life is shown as a sort of dreamy and hazy numbness. His disaffection and guilt is not really expressed very effectively even in his diary, and the visual techniques of the film serve as one of the only windows in to his mind set.

Just like Elephant and Last Days, Van Sant is concerned with the seemingly existential existence of modern young people.
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